Good Mexican—no bull. In a hurry for a quick, authentic Mexican lunch, or would you rather take some time and chill with a margarita? El Toro offers both, now with a new, full-scale restaurant at the corner of 6th & Union streets to complement a smaller spot just up the road at 624 N. Union. Both offer some of the biggest and best burritos Wilmington has to offer, and the new spot—at the site of the former Blue Parrot—has some shaded seating as well.
— Rob Kalesse, Contributing Writer
Here’s a hidden gem of a Mexican restaurant. It sits at the front of an unremarkable strip mall just over the line in Pennsylvania on Route 202 (95 Wilmington-West Chester Pike), but its menu is anything but unremarkable. Guacamole prepared tableside and tuna ceviche and grilled octopus appetizers are mouthwatering, as are the spicy shrimp tacos and short rib enchiladas rojo. Bonus is the freshly made margaritas with a bevy of tequila choices to keep you coming back.
— Michelle Kramer-Fitzgerald, Contributing Writer
Taste of Puebla’s Salsa Fresca
Kennett Square’s Taste of Puebla may have closed its doors in 2016, but the former Mexican restaurant’s flavors live on through the products they supply to local produce shops and farmers markets. Among the best of these is the Salsa Fresca, a chip dip that’s spicy, refreshing and highly addictive—so much so you may find yourself completing a solo mission through a whole container in one sitting. Wilmington area residents can discover this green gold at Honey Bee Market in Trolley Square, where fresh deliveries arrive every Thursday.
— Jim Miller, Director of Publications
Taqueria Los Primos
When I crave good, authentic Mexican tacos I head to this restaurant on the corner of Newport Gap Pike and Old Capitol Trail. The delicious hand-made tortillas are perfect for creating a soft taco packed with small pieces of chorizo, steak, pork or, if you like, tongue or tripe. Taco toppings include green or red salsa, fresh cut cilantro, red or white onions and limes. The small, unassuming restaurant also serves tamales, quesadillas, and menudo. The steak tacos are my favorite. I top the flavorful, small pieces of steak with onions, cilantro, and a dash of lime and green salsa, making one of the best tasting tacos in the area. Most items are under $10.
— Adriana Camacho-Church, Contributing Writer
You want authentic? Check out this establishment in an unprepossessing strip mall just outside Wilmington—3804 Lancaster Pike. There’s a large and varied menu, including outrageously low-priced tacos (three for $7; your choice of chicken, beef or goat). Quick service. Continuous Spanish-language TV adds to the verisimilitude.
— Bob Yearick, Contributing Editor
Aurea’s Mexican Restaurant
This hole-in-the-wall Mexican joint is tucked behind the Food Lion on Philadelphia Pike, which is good for me, but bad for those looking for truly authentic Mexican food. Of all the dishes on the menu, the quesadillas are hands-down the best darn thing I’ve ever tasted. For starters, the fact that you can choose a corn versus flour tortilla speaks volumes of the flavorful journey you’re about to embark on. I’m partial to the quesadilla al pastor, which is pork and pineapple, a sweet and savory combination that’s enhanced by the small, spicy green salsa you receive on the side. For more information, visit aureasmexicanrestaurant.com.
— Leeann Wallett, Contributing Writer
Although I don’t typically travel to get my Mexican food fix, I make it a point to get to Taqueria Moroleon at least once a year. Just over the Pennsylvania border on Route 41, its traditional cuisine and friendly atmosphere make it worth the 20-minute drive. I always get the same thing: chicken enchiladas with spicy tomatillo sauce. taqueriamoroleon.com
— Matt Loeb, Creative Director and Production Manager
Agave Mexican Restaurant
For me, a trip to the beach is never complete without a visit to this Lewes eatery offering renditions of chicken mole, enchiladas, tamales, quesadillas and more. A shareable go-to is the aptly-titled “super nachos”—a heaping mess of tortilla chips, guacamole and chili. The restaurant space is small but polished, though it’s so popular with locals that you’ll probably have to wait to be seated, but it’s worth it. Here’s a tip: If the weather’s nice, ask to be seated upstairs or on the rooftop patio for appetizers and drinks (and they’ve got options: more than 70 varieties of tequila are available). agavelewes.com
— Krista Connor, Senior Editor & Media Manager
El Diablo Burritos
OK, so the burrito isn’t exactly “authentic” Mexican food, but its origins and ingredients are. And El Diablo knocks it out of the park when it comes to a fast meal on the go that’s packed full of authentic flavor. With virtually endless flavor combinations, picking out ingredients in their assembly line can be a daunting task, but have no fear, they have suggestions for every protein. I suggest starting with the chipotle BBQ sauce, and definitely don’t pass up the pickled peppers—they’re amazing.
— Tyler Mitchell, Graphic Designer